Mugshots: 16 arrested in bust of alleged Hudson Valley drug traffickers

NEWBURGH, Orange County (WABC) -- More than a dozen people were arrested in what police are calling a massive and violent narcotics trafficking ring operating in the Hudson Valley.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Tuesday announced a 172-count indictment charging 16 individuals with conspiracy, criminal sale of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a controlled substance, in addition to other charges.

MUGSHOTS: Suspects arrested in violent Hudson Valley drug trafficking ring

The suspects were identified as:
--Monique Bentley AKA Cola
--Frederick Blue AKA Fredo
--John Boughton
--Tykwon Burks AKA Chop
--Steve Cohen AKA Lonkie
--Adrian Hutchinson AKA Travis
--Andrew Hutchinson AKA Jimmy
--Damion Jackson AKA Toe-Toe
--Demetrius Kelly AKA Meech
--Kevin Maldonado AKA Kels
--Kenny Maldonado-Irizarry AKA Ken Block
--Oneil Mitchell AKA O
--Kennedy Richards AKA Prezzy
--Ethan Santana AKA Edai, AKA L.A.
--Dwaine Tate AKA Devil
--Dwaine Watson AKA Short Boss, AKA Slash

All the suspects are from Newburgh, with the exception of Richards, who hails from Paterson, New Jersey. If convicted, they each face up to 25 years in prison.

Authorities say the suspects sold heroin and cocaine in Newburgh and elsewhere in Orange County.

"This takedown should send an unmistakable message, we won't let our communities live in fear," Schneiderman said. "Our investigation uncovered a sophisticated drug trafficking ring that we allege peddled cocaine, heroin, and violence on the streets of Newburgh and throughout New York. The opioid crisis and the violence that often comes with it has been catastrophic for small cities and suburban and upstate communities across New York."

Officials said the takedown, dubbed "Operation Yellow Brick Road" partially due to alleged ringleader Damion Jackson's street name "Toe-Toe," marks the eighth major drug bust since Schneiderman launched a new Initiative in April 2017 targeting the state's growing heroin, opioid, and narcotics trafficking networks. They say Operation Yellow Brick Road netted bulk heroin and hundreds of doses of heroin in individual glassines, some marked with brand names such as Focus, Shine, and X-men, along with bulk cocaine used to make thousands of individual doses for resale, 1 kilo of methamphetamine, 40 pounds of marijuana, 3 handguns, 1 sawed-off shotgun, 1 shotgun and at least $36,000 in cash.

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